Kenisha Gupta wins her third gold at Uzbekistan Open swimming

Kenisha Gupta clinched gold in 50m women’s freestyle with a personal best timing.

By Utathya Nag

Indian swimmer Kenisha Gupta won the gold medal in the women’s 50m freestyle event at the Uzbekistan Open Swimming Championship 2021. It was India’s only podium finish on the penultimate day of the competition.

The 18-year-old Kenisha Gupta clocked 26.68 seconds in the heats before bettering it in the finals.

The Mumbai-born Kenisha Gupta, who trains under Dronacharya Award-winning coach Nihar Ameen, swam her course in 26.61 seconds in the final race – 0.25 seconds faster than second-placed Natalya Kritinina of Uzbekistan.

Her timing was 0.24 seconds behind Shikha Tandon’s national record of 26.37 seconds set at the Malaysian Open in 2008.

This was the teenager’s third gold medal at the Uzbekistan swimming meet after winning the women’s 100m freestyle event with a national record timing of 57.42 seconds and the 200m, clocking 2:06.66 seconds - also her personal best.

Kenisha upset Rio Olympian Shivani Kataria in both the 100m and 200m to clinch gold.

Meanwhile, in the 50m freestyle men’s variant, the Indian trio of Tanish Mathew, AS Anand and D Adhithya couldn’t make the podium.

The Uzbekistan Open Swimming Championship 2021 concludes on Saturday.